How To Create Healthy Meal Plans

Whether you are trying to lose weight or not, it is important to create interesting and healthy meal plans for yourself and your family. When you have a lot of demands on your time, this isn’t always an easy thing to do and it gets even more difficult when you have to cater for special diets such as weight loss diets or vegetarian diets as well.

One of the best things you can do to help prepare healthy meal plans is to create weekly meal plans so you can buy all your groceries in advance and you know what to make for each daily meal. This stops you from worrying each day about what you will cook. It also lets you look at the plans for the week and check that they are actually healthy meal plans, with a balance of all the nutrients that are needed.

Healthy meal plans needs protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and fats. It is important to include good (polyunsaturated) fats. Lots of fatty meat, high fat dairy produce and fried foods is not good for anyone. Healthy meal plans consisting of fish, lean meat, poultry, wholegrains and fresh fruit and vegetables are a great basis to work from.

If you are looking for some healthy eating recipes there are a lot on the internet. Most foods also come with the nutritional values on the packaging which will help you when you are preparing your healthy meal plans for the week. Generally pre-prepared foods, whilst useful, are not as nutritionally healthy as home-made alternatives.

Some methods of cooking remove nutrients from food. If you are trying to create healthy meal plans the method of cooking is as important as the foods you include. If you have a pressure cooker use it for some of your cooking. Not only will it save you money but it is also healthier as it preserves the nutrients due to the speed of cooking. Likewise steaming vegetables or fish instead of boiling or frying preserves more vitamins and minerals.

Healthy meal plans don’t need to include meat or fish if there are members of your family who don’t eat them. It is very easy for example to create vegetarian versions of the meals in your meal plans. Many soya based meat substitutes, tofu and quorn have low fat and high protein values so they can be substituted easily.

Healthy meal plans don’t need to be boring. There may be less chocolate, it is true, but there are some fantastic fruit based recipes, oat and nut based snacks, and your children may grow to love home-made oatie bars and cereals more than shop-bought varieties.

Whatever your tastes in food, it isn’t difficult to make a few changes to your eating habits to turn your weekly menus into healthy meal plans. In combination with a reasonable level of activity then substituting sugary and fatty foods for more healthy ones could see your health improve and you could lose weight easily too, without trying too hard.

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